WOTW: help

| - Gorka Dieitz-Sanxurxo |

triplo word of the week - help


今週のWOTWは『help』です。’Help’ is a verb, but it can also be used as a noun and, in one certain instance, as an adjective. Let’s have a look, first, as a verb:


- She always help people in need. (To make it easier or possible for (someone) to do something by offering them one's collaboration. Notice that ‘help’ is followed by an object here: help people, help my mother, help me!…)


Without an object:

- Even 5 minutes of practice a day will help. (Improve a situation or be beneficial)

- Whenever you see an empty dish, help the guests to some more food. (Serve food or drinks)

- There's the fridge. Please help yourself. (‘Help oneself’ means take without permission)


‘Help’ is also very commonly used followed by prepositions:

- He helps out at his father’s repair shop at the weekends. (Assist with work)

- The child helped her grandmother up. (Assist to move)

- Help me off these tight jeans, please. (Assist someone to take clothes off, or, followed by ‘on’, put them on)


With can/could

A very common use is ‘can't be helped’ which could sometimes be translated as 「しょがない」


- He tried and tried to bail himself out but the hole was way too big. It couldn't be helped. (Cannot be avoided, in this case, for the boat to sink)

- My mum finds Naomi Watanabe so funny. She can't help herself from laughing when she’s on TV. (Cannot avoid laughing)


We can also say ‘there is/was no help’. It also means that something cannot be avoided:

- There’s no help shouting. No one will hear us. (Also ‘there isn’t’)


Now as a noun:


- You can always ask your teacher for help. (The action of helping someone to do something)

- Dusting a house in the desert is really no help. (Be useful)

- He has been a great help. Maybe we should hire him. (Someone or something that helps)

- The help comes ones a week for one or two hours. (A person who works doing housework and chores)


As an modifier:

- The help menu is not clear enough. You should get another computer. (Instructions displayed on a computer)


As an exclamation:

- Help! I need somebody. Help! Not just anybody. Help! You know I need someone. Help!


‘A helping hand’ and ‘so help me’ or ‘so help me God’ are two expressions that people sometime use. The first one means ‘assistance’ and the second one is used to emphasise that what we are saying is really meant:

- She lent me a helping hand when I really needed it. (She helped me)

- I know it's about time I got a driver’s licence, so help me next summer I'll get one. (I promise or I really mean it this time)


発音は/hɛlp/ です。いつものように、最後に「U」の音はありませんので気をつけてください。音節は1つです。